In June 2014, my partner and I embarked on our Euro trip dream! We left the warm shores of Australia to commence six months of travelling throughout Europe and the things that were lying ahead of us were going to be nothing short of life changing.
While we were in Interlaken, Switzerland, we had a last minute change of plans to head up to Rust, Germany, to enjoy two nights at Europa-Park as my early birthday treat! After scoping out the cost of the train and the excessive time it would take to sit on a bus, we decided to look into something a South African traveller had opened our eyes to while we were in Lake Como in Italy … BlaBlaCar!
We created a profile which took less than five minutes to do and started looking at dates to see if anyone was driving out of or via Interlaken. WINNER! We found a young woman who was making the drive the following day all the way up to Basel, which worked out well for us because we allowed ourselves a day or two in between getting to Europa-Park to have a stop-over to experience a bit of Swiss city-living. We sent a quick message to the driver to see if there would be space for ourselves and our large suitcases. The response time was impressive! Within 10 minutes (and before we even got around to contacting anyone else) the driver got back to us to inform us that we had the all clear to be picked up the next day to go to Basel! It wasn’t long after this that we realised just how financially sustainable this was. We were looking at a train ticket to Basel for around €80 each. Our BlaBlaCar? £5 EACH! We couldn’t believe how cheap and convenient this was.
That following morning our driver arrived at our hostel right on time and to our amazement, in an Alfa Romeo! So exciting considering I hadn’t ever been in a car this flashy before. I was a little concerned however that it would be a bit awkward or uncomfortable as this was our first time ridesharing, but to our surprise, it was the first time our driver had used BlaBlaCar, too! So we were in fact sharing this new experience together, which made it even more special. The ride was incredibly comfortable with a very friendly (and safe) driver. We arrived in Basel with time to spare and were impressed with our first ever BlaBlaCar experience which was so enjoyable!
After completing our first ride, there was no need for us to look into trains or buses to get to Rust: we went straight back on BlaBlaCar to see if there were any drivers heading up to Germany! Within seconds we found a match and after a quick message we were booked in for our second BlaBlaCar! Another round of prompt messages back and forth organising our pick up time and location and just like that, our next ride was sorted. Our BlaBlaCar driver was there right on time, in a brand new Jag! We have noticed a similar theme: Europeans love to drive around in style. From the moment we shook hands with our driver, we hit it off. It was yet another fantastic journey all the way to Rust for a measly £8 each! This lovely gentleman made our journey so pleasant and allowed us to experience the Autobahn in all its glory.
There’s no other way to put it: BlaBlaCar is one of the best concepts I have ever come across during my travels. It’s easy to use, it’s quick, you save your pennies and the best thing of all, you get to meet a diverse range of people! As travellers, I feel this is absolutely fantastic as during both of our rides we were given tips and tricks for where we were visiting. The only regret I have is that we didn’t know about BlaBlaCar sooner, because there would have been so much time and money saved by ridesharing from day one of our travels. I couldn’t recommend this to anyone more than I am now. Sign up! Create your profile! Search for your trip! Meet new people! Save money! What’s not to love?
Thank you BlaBlaCar for making our journeys possible and to our two amazing drivers who gave us an experience we won’t forget.
Hayley Campbell is an Australian lifestyle, beauty and fashion blogger for The Blonde Perfectionist. Visit Hayley’s Instagram to see more of her travels.